The Coffee Game


Now the thing about marriage is it can either be an excursion in hell or it can be a very happy experience. Most of us of course would choose the latter and lest anyone tries to read between the lines and misquote me I come in on the side of happy experience. That doesn’t mean there are not times of intense fellowship as I’ve heard it described but if one can put it all into perspective and not try and get one’s way all the time there can be many days of pleasurable sailing on a tranquil sea.

At this point though I need to introduce a caveat for those menfolk who are contemplating marriage and therefor uninitiated in the art of home sharing. No, I’m not talking about the document that cheerfully implies the home purchased in joint names belongs to both. That’s the legal side perhaps. What I’m talking about is the ownership of space within the home. Let me illustrate. The garage or hobby shed is considered property of the man of the house to a prospective groom. That’s where his precious tools of trade, such things as golf sticks and fishing gear will be located and of course the hobby shed where things of marvellous perfection will be constructed.

But it may come as a surprise for a man to realize before marriage that there are sacred places for women too. There is the woman’s hobby room of course. No man enters there without peril. But it is soon to be learned that the house is a woman’s hobby room to be arranged and supervised room by room with the man entering at her discretion, and sometimes peril.

One of the most sacred of these areas of occupation is the kitchen. Great thoughts are dreamed there, and these translate into delectable dishes which contribute to marriage being a pleasurable experience. Of course, there are other pleasures, but then I digress.

But back to the kitchen. The man of the house should move about in this area with a mixture of caution and respect. Rapid movements take place which could lead one into hot water, something we’ll talk about in a minute or two. The husband has freedom of movement to a certain extent but must be on the alert. If bidden one can take part in the choreography under instruction but the man should never take the initiative without a clear certificate of competence having been earned and granted.

Visiting women classified as safe friends have the free run of the kitchen. Preparations can go on with a review of the state of the world, the neighbourhood and of course sundry marriage relationships. It is a given all safe women have that competence to be present and do not need supervision, unsafe women friends though remain in the lounge area with their husbands to be entertained until summonsed to the meal in preparation.

No men, husbands or otherwise however can be categorized as safe in the inner sanctum of the kitchen. I think all my readers will be familiar with the red line barrier at a bank or airport where you wait patiently until called. While there is no red line painted in a kitchen of an empty house when one is led to the slaughter by a Real Estate Agent the lovesick husband to be will soon learn that line is clearly seen by his future wife and the barrier must be respected.

And so, it was after a lifetime of training I was permitted to join the choreography of the kitchen dance while my wife darted around putting finishing touches to everything. It reminded me of the days of my wasted youth and early manhood when it was customary to prance around a dance floor to dances with interesting names like Gypsy Tap. I’d now graduated to the kitchen three step and could hum a merry tune as I bobbed and weaved to avoid potential body impacts much like perils of the rock and roll era in a crowded ballroom.

But it was obvious my training had not been sufficient in this area. One quick move not anticipated and the hot drink in my wife’s hand was deposited on my arm to be followed by an excruciating pain as I looked bewildered at protesting flesh. Of course, it was my fault, I cheerfully admit to that now. I should have been in North Korea or some other safe place, not in that kitchen where guided missiles could be a problem.

My wife stared at the reddening flesh and blanched. “Put it under the cold tap she commanded!”

So, I hastened to the cold tap and turned it on full, dodging steam rising from my wounded arm as water met my smouldering roast. A quick inspection of the arm had wife on the phone to the nearby Medical Centre explaining the situation and we were soon on the way to these compassionate angels of mercy while I held my arm in front of me like soldier in the Third Reich hailing startled pigeons along the way.

While the nurse performed her magic on wounded arm wrapping the package carefully for safe transportation, the doctor appeared for an inspection carrying a fresh cup of coffee in his hand,

“I don’t want to play the coffee game anymore!” I yelled with a very strong conviction.

The doctor and nurse gave a muffled laugh. After all its not proper to laugh at other’s misfortunes is it? They were in the know from wife’s detailed explanation of the sad event.

The doctor examined the nurse’s handiwork approvingly.

“Then you better behave well here and make sure you are faster getting out of the way in future at home.” The nurse stifled a giggle.

To this day I stay a respectable distance away from anyone carrying a hot drink. It’s a lethal weapon. The good news is the skill of that nurse provided a full recovery of that badly scalded arm for which I’ll always be indebted to that angel in a nursing uniform. And the kitchen? Well I’m still permitted in the kitchen, but because my wife now realizes the learning difficulties of her husband she keeps a wary eye on me too when I’m there.

And the Medical Centre? I’m frequently asked with a smile if I still play the coffee game.

“© Copyright Ian Grice 2017 All rights reserved

The above image is copyrighted to



Some time ago one of Georgine’s female friends presented her with a wall hanging called “The Rules.” With her permission I am posting this so that all who read this blog, particularly men, will know where they stand in the social order.

ü  The female always makes the rules.

ü  The rules are subject to change at any time without prior notice.

ü  No male can possibly know all the rules.

ü  It the female suspects the male knows all the rules she must immediately change some or all the rules.

ü  The female is never wrong.

ü  If the female is wrong, it is due to a misunderstanding which was the direct result of something the male said or did.

ü  The male must apologize for causing such misunderstanding.

ü  The male is always wrong.

ü  The male may be right if he agrees with the female unless she wants him to disagree.

ü  The female may change her mind at any time.

ü  The male may never change his mind without the express written consent of the female.

ü  The female has every right to be angry or upset at any time.

ü  The male must remain calm always unless the female wants him to be angry and/or upset.

ü  The female must under no circumstances let the male know whether she wants him to be angry and/or upset.

ü  The male is expected to mind read always.

Author unknown.


14 thoughts on “The Coffee Game

  1. I had to chuckle as I read this “story”! Great!

    On Wed, Nov 22, 2017 at 4:23 PM, ianscyberspace wrote:

    > ianscyberspace posted: ” Now the thing about marriage is it can either be > an excursion in hell or it can be a very happy experience. Most of us of > course would choose the latter and lest anyone tries to read between the > lines and misquote me I come in on the side of happy exper” >

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really enjoyed this, Ian, because our kitchen is big enough, but not huge. So, I’m often repeating myself by saying, “it’s a one-woman kitchen.” 🙂 And my husband and I enjoy our coffee, too, but luckily, he’s been safe, so far.
    Loved this line also, “Rapid movements take place which could lead one into hot water.” Pun intended? Your backstory building up to the main event was very good and enjoyable.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Goes right along with the story in Singapore where I walked into the glass door that was shut in my face as we were moving house to the new high rise building we bought there at the same time our office moved temporarily to Suntec City, Marina Bay. I have a flat face picture of that to remind me. You need to ask GG about that experience. 🙂


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